Today, many adults struggle with weight loss as they battle the demands of life, stress, managing a healthy diet, and finding time to exercise. Even when we do everything “right”, it can be hard to shed the pounds and make lasting behavior changes when we don’t see immediate results. In addition, aging and the slowing down of our bodies’ metabolism decrease the likelihood that we’ll keep the weight off.
While there is no magic pill that will cure obesity, a condition that affects over 40% of adults in the United States, there are new types of medicines that are potential game-changers. Semaglutide is one of those options.
What Is Semaglutide?
Semaglutide is a medication called GLP-1s (glucagon-like peptide-1s). It is an FDA-approved injectable for weight loss that mimics the actions of GLP-1, a hormone that targets specific areas of the brain known to suppress hunger. Research shows that, in combination with lifestyle changes, GLP-1s are one of the most effective and safe long-term option for weight loss.
According to an article in the NY Times:
For the first time, a drug has been shown so effective against obesity that patients may dodge many of its worst consequences, including diabetes, researchers reported on Wednesday.
The drug, semaglutide, made by Novo Nordisk, already is marketed as a treatment for Type 2 diabetes. In a clinical trial paid for by the company and published in the New England Journal of Medicine, researchers at Northwestern University in Chicago tested semaglutide at a much higher dose as an anti-obesity medication.
Nearly 2,000 participants, at 129 centers in 16 countries, injected themselves weekly with semaglutide or a placebo for 68 weeks. Those who got the drug lost close to 15 percent of their body weight, on average, compared with 2.4 percent among those receiving the placebo.
More than a third of the participants receiving the drug lost more than 20 percent of their weight. Symptoms of diabetes and pre-diabetes improved in many patients.
How Does Semaglutide Work?
Semaglutide is different from older classes of weight loss medications (like phentermine) because it works on key underlying metabolic pathways to support sustained weight loss.
GLP-1s address the underlying biology that is most important for weight loss, and help lower your set point, or the weight your body fights to stay at. They are powerful, naturally occurring hormones made by your gut that send signals to your brain to decrease your appetite, improve your metabolic system, and regulate your digestion so you can feel full longer and maximize nutrient absorption. People who take semaglutide also have altered food preferences, resulting in lower calorie consumption.
In clinical trials, users lost an average of 35 pounds. Semaglutide has exceeded the expectations of traditional weight loss medications and may have transformational results for any individual looking to lose weight.
Is Semaglutide Safe?
All GLP-1s are clinically tested, stimulant-free, and non-habit forming.
Side effects are extremely rare, and most individuals who take a GLP-1 do not experience any. For those who do, nausea is the most common, and this typically resolves over the first few weeks of being on the medication. We can help you manage any side affects you may experience.
Is Semaglutide For You?
The ideal candidates for semaglutide are people with a BMI of 30 or greater or a BMI of 27 or greater and a medical condition made worse by obesity.
If you would like discuss semaglutide as an option for you, please contact our office to schedule a consultation!
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